What does a stream-enter still doubt?

Continuing the discussion from Is the knowledge obtained at stream-entry inferential or direct knowledge?:

What does a Stream-enter still doubt?


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:thinking: Let’s look at wikipedia together.

There are seven more fetters. What do you think?

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I see. I found a doubt mentioned in my study. I think it was Doubt that the the world is suffering. Or that desire is suffering.

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MN1:171.4: Because he has understood that relishing is the root of suffering,


Maybe it has to do with the fact that we do see in EBTs accounts of stream-enterers who would still have an amount of lust / sensual desire in them. In theory even anger would still take their minds.

It is hard to say how from those individuals’ experience of the attainment the presence of those remaining fetters are reconciled with the absence of doubt about the Buddha`s teachings.

Nevertheless, I understand as possible for one to, for example, abandon all doubts about the negative aspect of smoking and still smoke! It is paradoxical but not unheard of! :man_shrugging:


Thank you for explanation. It’s true

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I think that was obvious right? But why is that? For a stream-enter? Is there a sutta that talks why a stream-enter doesn’t move forward in the path? Because lack of what? Seeing the fetters is not enough for me.

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Much like the case of Sarakani (SN55.24). Having had a close relation who was alcoholic , I can attest to the paradoxical situation of a sentient being knowing the cause of their Suffering, knowing the action needed to be done to obtain Freedom, yet not being able to break free.

Just contemplate… What did Sarakani lack?


Isn’t it because they can let go of attachment somewhat easy. But like your example it doesn’t really mean they are attached and that they aren’t the ones effected by the act? Or else the emotions plays a role in their life in body but they just stay somewhat unaffected mentally?

Householder, when a noble disciple has quelled five dangers and threats, has the four factors of stream-entry, and has clearly seen and comprehended the noble cycle with wisdom, they may, if they wish, declare of themselves: ‘I’ve finished with rebirth in hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. I’ve finished with all places of loss, bad places, the underworld. I am a stream-enterer!

So that’s the reason. I understand now.
Why they would feel unworried

Actually it was not obvious to me for decades of my life.

There was always the conviction that it was possible to “pursue delights in moderation”. I had this wrong view that some balance could be struck to seek delight without causing suffering. The simple joy of learning, what could possibly be wrong with learning more and more and more? Or if one hug is good, then let’s have two hugs.

So it is not so simple a thing, not so obvious. Yet every time I relished, suffering arose. The first bite of chocolate was delightful, but each bite after paled in comparison. If one ski run was good, more ski runs became exhausting. If one hug was good, the second became less. I tried so many many different ways looking for the “right answer” that would permit a pursuit of delights without clinging. And even though I never found a way, I hoped for one.

After many decades I read Ven. Bodhi’s translation that “delight is the root of suffering.” And I just started laughing. It was so funny. I had been chasing my tail for no reason, and had only proved to myself that the Buddha was right. I thought to myself, “Well, I am not as wise as the Buddha, and now there is no need to look further for how to pursue delight!”

But somehow understanding that desire is the root of suffering wasn’t enough. Was life a huge practical joke of delights that could never be grasped? Perhaps there was more to consider. Perhaps godlike perfection was worth seeking?

AN2.36:1.11: Sāriputta said this: “Who is a person fettered internally? It’s a mendicant who is ethical, restrained in the monastic code, conducting themselves well and seeking alms in suitable places. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re reborn in one of the orders of gods. When they pass away from there, they’re a returner, who comes back to this state of existence.

A stream-enterer hasn’t dealt fully with underlying tendencies. Greed, hate and delusion still bubble there. As long as they are there, we are fettered and hindered. As long as we are fettered and hindered, we seek right freedom. The suttas tell us how the fetters work and how to escape from them. For example, I never thought drowsiness was a hindrance until I read the suttas–until then I had thought drowsiness to be simply pleasant! And that burning restlessness to learn? Oh dear! :laughing:

If you are fortunate to already firmly believe that desire is the root of suffering, then take a good look at each of the fetters. Understand each one thoroughly, not carelessly. The fetters run deep. Read each of the suttas carefully and you will eventually find a sutta that seems “strange and uncomfortable.” Study those suttas very very carefully!

If 4000 suttas seems to much, then first explore restlessness. :wink:

AN10.76:8.1: Without giving up three things you can’t give up restlessness, lack of restraint, and unethical conduct.
AN10.76:8.2: What three?
AN10.76:8.3: Faithlessness, uncharitableness, and laziness.



I understand you. Same for me with drowsiness. :joy: AN 7.58 helped a lot to understand it.

I’m actually just exploring everyone comments. I tend to as way of learning. I don’t want to feel like I know it. Maybe it’s like a Dhamma talk type that Bhikkhu’s ask each other questions.

But thanks for everyone reply. I hope catched something

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They no longer doubt the Buddha, Dhamma, Sangha, but they’ve learned to be introspective and not trust everything they think!


That’s the correct answer. Thank you Bhante. In their inner potential to reach Nibbāna.